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Forecast shows uptick in Washington state revenue

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Slow economic growth is expected to continue in Washington state, but officials on Tuesday warned that the state still faces a “significant budget challenge” while writing a new two-year budget next year.

An updated forecast by the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council shows lawmakers may have $395 million more available to them through the middle of 2017 — $157 million more than predicted in February for the remainder of the two-year budget that ends mid-2015 and $238 million more for the next budget that ends mid-2017. It’s a small amount for a state in which the two-year budget cycle is expected to collect about $33 billion for the general fund through 2015 and about $36 billion through 2017.

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